At the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, university students were faced with a unique set of challenges. Not only were they suddenly isolated from friends and family like the rest of the world, many of them were also in an entirely new environment away from their usual support systems, and with limited avenues to make new friends. UBC Bachelor of Commerce (BCom) student Chirag Jadhwani co-founded platform PeerSupport.io to combat feelings of isolation and help people just like him.
A place to talk to someone
PeerSupport.io is a website – which is also being converted to an app – that asks users to answer personal questions and fill in what they’re hoping to speak with someone about.
The questionnaire covers common struggles such as experiencing anxiety and stress, handling a breakup, and navigating family dynamics. It also asks users to fill in their favourite sports, hobbies, and entertainment medium. It then generates five matches every day for each user.
The platform, which Jadhwani co-founded with fellow UBC Sauder student Tanraj Dhillon, focuses on helping users directly with therapeutics and through tools like journaling and support groups. The app was co-developed with mental health professionals including practising therapists and faculty members at the UBC Faculty of Medicine. The platform helps universities and hospitals scale up their peer support offerings, and the institutions pay a subscription price to use PeerSupport.io for their populations.
To read the full story, please visit the Sauder School of Business website.
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